With more than twenty-five years of experience training and teaching capoeira, MESTRE FOCA, a native of Brasília, Brazil, is the founder of Capoeira Brooklyn, the borough’s only full-time capoeira academy. The first mestre de Capoeira in Brooklyn, he has spent a decade building a strong and energetic community of students that reflects the rich physical, social, mental, and spiritual elements of the art.
Mestre Foca specializes in teaching children, but his unique and creative approach to instruction encourages discipline, focus, and respect in students of all ages and immerses them in Brazilian music, language, and culture. His belief in the positive, lasting impact of capoeira on all aspects of a capoeirista’s life permeates his classes.
Certified as a professional martial arts instructor through IDEA Health & Fitness Association, he teaches capoeira workshops around the world as an ambassador for Brazilian culture. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and children.
PROFESSORA ROUXINOL is committed to making capoeira accessible for both children and adults of all fitness levels. A certified personal trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine with nearly twenty years of capoeira experience, she infuses her classes with a variety of modalities. Her holistic approach to the discipline and her belief that capoeira can be the gateway to healthier, more productive habits have led her to develop innovative exercises that focus on proper alignment, increased flexibility and a strong core. Recognized in Brazil and the U.S. for her accomplishments in capoeira, she teaches in schools all over New York City and offers special workshops in maculelê (a folkloric warrior dance), music, and Portuguese language. Raised in Africa, she lives in Brooklyn with her family.
For an example of Mestre Foca and Professora Rouxinol’s inventive instructional style, check out Vem Brin Capoeira, a compilation of original capoeira and maculelê songs which they wrote and performed—and which they regularly use as teaching tools. Their fun and inspiring music introduces basic capoeira movements, rhythms, history, and Portuguese vocabulary, all of which they believe is essential to their students’ growth. Teachers, parents, and students can purchase the album here or on iTunes.